Thursday, February 13, 2020

7 Date ideas that won't break the bank

When people suggest going on a "date", the first idea that comes to mind is the whole dinner and drinks scenario, which obviously can get expensive fast.  An appetizer, two meals, 4 glasses of wine, plus tip (not to mention if you have to hire a babysitter) get the point.  For this reason, dates may be far and few for many couples.  Here are 7 date ideas that won't break the bank!

1.  Weeknight movies.  Going to the movie theater can be expensive these days.  First you have the upwards of $12 a person per ticket, then you add on extras such as soda, popcorn, candy.  There's a few theaters around here that offer Tuesday and Wednesday specials where ticket prices are ONLY $5!!!  Some also do Early Bird Specials (if you want to go see a movie before 11 am) with discounted prices.  Look into your local theaters and see what they have to offer!

2.  Go to a museum or the zoo.  Okay, so this one may be a little partial to St. Louis, because our museums and zoo is free here...but for a day of adventure, the fun to be had probably outweighs the cost of admission.

3.  Pack a picnic.  Picnic-ing is one of my favorite things to do in spring and summer!  Pack up some snacks or search Pinterest for picnic-worthy food ideas, grab a bottle of Rose, a blanket and head to your favorite park for an afternoon in the sun (or shade).  Just don't forget the bottle opener and cups (rookie mistakes, I know).

4.  Brunch date at home.  Also, Pinterest is FULL of great brunch ideas...French Toast Casserole, Breakfast Pizza, Eggs Benedict, you know how the rabbit hole of Pinterest works.  This is a fun Saturday or Sunday morning or early afternoon date idea and best perk:  The mimosas are always bottomless!

5.  Enjoy live music without the concert ticket prices.  During the spring and summer months, we have a few parks that put on live music concert series for free!  You can take your own snacks, drinks and enjoy the music without paying an admission.  Also, there's so many breweries and bars that offer live music just about any night of the week, plus you're supporting local artists and businesses so it's a win-win for everyone!

6.  Grab coffee and browse the Farmers Market.  Pour your home-made coffee into your re-usable cup (saving money and sustainable!) and hit up the farmers market.  Just browse to see what there is to offer or treat yourselves to some fresh flowers or locally made jams.  The thing about supporting small and local businesses is that your feel good about where your money is going!

7.  Take a hike.  Find a park near-by that's known for hiking (or even just views, insta-worthy!) and go on an outdoorsy adventure!

What are some date ideas that you have?

♥ always

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Trends to Thrift for 2020

You know what they say, what goes around comes around.  Fashion trends of past decades are making a huge impact for 2020 styles.  Shopping second-hand gives you the opportunity to stay fashionable on a budget, shop sustainable, create a wardrobe that is truly one-of-a-kind...and there's the thrill of a treasure hunt.  Some style are more common and easier to pick up at a resale of thrift store.  I've gathered some trends for 2020 to keep an eye out for while thrifting.

1.  Polka Dots

This whimsical 80's print can be a bold move but is fairly simple to style.  Add a little polka dot with a hair scarf or go extreme with a midi skirt.  Pair a polka dot top with your favorite jeans or mix up the prints and add some stripes or a touch of animal print.  Over the past few months, I've already picked up a few polka-dot print pieces for myself so I know they're pretty easy to come by!

2. Florals

As "groundbreaking" as it may be, florals are always a classic and feminine option (especially in spring).  For 2020, though, they're a little more different than seen in the past shown in vibrant colors and more abstract patterns.  Groovyyy!

3.  Denim

Blue jean, baby.  Denim dresses, skirts, overalls, Canadian Tuxedos.  Flare denim isn't the only 70's trend that's come back.  Whether you're rocking the monochrome head-to-toe look or pairing a midi skirt with your favorite band tee, denim just creates an effortlessly cool look.  I've definitely spotted flares and longer denim skirts at Goodwill, so keep your eyes peeled!

4.  Cardigans

Now this isn't styled as a typical layered "granny cardigan" but worn as a shirt.  A cropped cardigan paired with jeans is an easy, sweet and casual outfit but a step "dressier" than the basic white tee and jean pairing.  Cardigans are super easy to find second-hand so there's no doubt in my mind that you'll be able to pick up a few this season!

Hot Colors in Fashion

1.  Flame Scarlet

This fiery red is a color to be on the lookout for!  Wear as a blouse or skirt and I personally think it would pair beautifully with the classic camel color that's been shown everywhere for a bit now!

2.  Faded Denim

I see TONS of blues while thrifting and am really a fan of this faded denim shade.  I think it would pair perfectly with dark wash blue jeans and love the last photo with the coat, proving that this lighter color isn't just for spring and summer.

3.  Coral Pink

An update on the millennial pink shade that's been trendy for a few years now, I'm a big fan of this coral pink.  It's such a pretty shade and I just picture picking up a silky blouse in this color at a thrift store.

What are your favorite trends that you see for 2020?  Any special items you're looking for while thrifting?  Good luck in your thrift shopping adventures and I'll catch you next time!

♥ always

Thursday, April 18, 2019

cariPro Ultrasonic Electric Toothbrush Review + GIVEAWAY

I received the cariPRO Ultrasonic Electric Toothbrush working with Smile Brilliant, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

When Smile Brilliant reached out to me, I was so excited to partner up with them again! This collaboration was to try out their newly released cariPRO Ultrasonic Electric Toothbrush. First of all, I had never in my life used an electronic toothbrush. Second of all, with my past experience with Smile Brilliant, I had a feeling that I wouldn't regret this product. 

The cariPRO package arrives with the cariPro Toothbrush, charging base, two electric toothbrush heads, and the instruction manual (which I found helpful because apparently, I didn't know how to brush my teeth with this new device). The brush itself has a very sleek, neutral, modern appearance and offers 5 brush modes to choose from: Clean, White, Massage, Gum Care, and Sensitive. 

The brush is set on a 2-minute timer and pulses in 30-second increments. The pause of the pulsing is an indication of when to move the brush to another quadrant of your mouth. 

It took me using the cariPRO a few times to get used to considering I've used manual toothbrushes all my life. At first, it tickled with the vibrating and I honestly wasn't sure if I was brushing correctly (ha). After re-skimming the manual and a few more uses, I got the hang of it. Testing out the different settings was fun, I believe my favorite is probably the Sensitive since the pulses aren't quite as intense. One day after using the toothbrush, I noticed mild sensitivity but am not sure if it was because of the setting or the brush reaching areas that a manual toothbrush doesn't get to. 

After a week of using the cariPRO toothbrush, I'm in love. My teeth feel much cleaner after brushing and even throughout the day than they did with a manual toothbrush. I enjoy the timer because I know I'm brushing the correct length of time and hitting every area, almost like the cariPRO is holding me accountable for good dental hygiene (unlike my old rushing the brushing method). The different modes are incredibly nice so that you can focus on different aspects each time you brush if you choose. Also, the battery is made to remain charged for 30 days, which is much longer than I expected! 

Enter my giveaway for a chance to win a cariPRO Ultrasonic Electric Toothbrush:

To achieve a healthier smile for yourself with the cariPRO Ultrasonic Electric Toothbrush, purchase here: cariPRO Ultrasonic Electric Toothbrush and use code alwaysallison20 for 20% off!

♥ always


best electric toothbrush

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Dreamy decor trends for 2019

As I've gotten older, I've realized staying in (especially throughout winter months) is more appealing than going out.  The key to wanting to stay in is creating a home you like, can relax at, and simply just enjoy.  Changing things out can make a "same old" space feel new and refreshed for the months ahead.

Every year, there are new trends in home decor and I love following the trends while also staying true to myself.  In 2019, you can expect to see bolder colors along with feminine tones, more natural touches, and decor that makes a statement.  If you're curious about finding new trends for your living space, I've rounded up my favorite trends for 2019 to help inspire throughout the rest of the year.

1.  Night Watch Green
This unexpectedly amazing deep green shade represents renewal while bringing a lush greenery and luxurious feel to a space.  Night Watch Green pairs flawlessly with pops of color and metallics.  Use it boldly for cabinets and wall paint or as an accent for chairs and decor.

2.  Boho Decor
Boho is definitely a style I've always been drawn to.  Mixing prints and textures make a room exciting and intriguing while natural elements and plants can give one all the heart eyes.

3.  Terrazzo
Marble, specifically grey/white, has been the big trend in decor, accessories, and everything in between for years now.  It's refreshing to see a new "rock (?)" style taking a seat at the decor table.  The mixture of different elements in Terrazzo makes it unique and interesting.

4.  Statement Ceilings
This is a trend that can really make the most out of a space and I am here for it.  If you've got the decor covered on ground level, why not take it up for the main event (literally)?

5.  Feminine Tones
A touch of pink, blush, rose gold, plum, or any other feminine tones never hurt anyone.  It can soften a room without making it overly feminine.  BUT, just take a look at that pink tiled bathroom!  I think I'm going to need that in my future home.

6.  Black + White Decor
Does black and white ever really go out of style?  It's a clean, classic color combination that you really can't go wrong with.

Which is your favorite trend of 2019?

♥ always

Photo Sources:  Decor Mag, Fresh Home, Pinterest, Bohemian Collective,, Flea Market Fab,, Houzz, Domino, Cote Maison, Lucy and Company, Neuvo Estilo, Hattas, Etsy, Blissful Blog, Apartment Therapy, Instagram, Etsy

Friday, February 8, 2019

Friday Favorites

TGIF!  Is it just me or does this week feel like its been a decade long?  Nothing happened in particular that made it a "long" week, but I just feel like we've been in the same week for a long time.  This weekend's forecast calls for another cold and snowy one here in St. Louis, which I'm not looking forward to.  Can it just be spring already!?  Well, anyways, here's a roundup of my 5 favorite things I found this week.

Who doesn't love Trader Joe's?  And who wouldn't want Valentine's treats from Trader Joe's?  Honestly,  won't pass judgment if you keep these treats for yourself...I'm planning to get all the cupcakes!

Love the idea of a girls' party to celebrate the women in your life.  This Galentine's Day Pizza Party (complete with HEART-SHAPED PIZZA) is honestly what Galentine Goals are made of.

Well...let's be honest here...the dog can't really talk back ;)
This adorable and funny Valentine's Day card is available by Unblushing on Etsy!

No green thumb?  No problem!
Yesterday while I was in Target, I came across these leaf stems that are so incredibly perfect and realistic looking, I fell in love.  I had to come home to figure out if there's a spot or large vase/basket for me to use them but fully intend on purchasing a few during my next Target run.  They definitely *spark joy*   :)

Another Target run find.  These marbleized mugs!  SO CUTE and a great Valentine's Day gift idea as well!  Pictured here is the pink but they're also available in orange, green, and purple!

Have a great weekend!
♥ always

Image Sources:  Refinery29, Etsy, Target, Rue Daily